Police-related cartoons have long been a New Yorker staple. The very first one, by Gardner Rea, appeared in the very first issue, and the magazine’s second cover, by Al Frueh, featured two policemen riding on a tiny car. Read more
Of many wonderful photos from Jack Ziegler‘s memorial this past Saturday, this one really caught my eye. Taken by the New Yorker‘s former television critic, Nancy Franklin, we see, from the left, the New Yorker‘s newly appointed cartoon editor, Emma Allen, then Anne Hall Elser, and Lee Lorenz, the magazine’s art editor from 1973 through 1993, and then cartoon editor from 1993 through 1997. We have Mr. Lorenz to thank for bringing Mr. Ziegler’s work into the magazine. Ms. Elser was Mr. Lorenz’s invaluable assistant in the art department for his 24 years in that position.
At some point during Saturday’s event, Danny Shanahan introduced Ms. Allen to Mr. Lorenz. I’m hoping a photo will surface.
An Obscure Hoff
Scott Burns, of Armadillo & Dicker Books out in California has sent in this scan of a hitherto (for me) unseen Syd Hoff piece. Here’s Mr. Burns’ description:
Post of Interest: David Sipress’s Cultural Comment on newyorker.com, February 3, 2017: “How To Stay Sane As A Cartoonist in Trumpland”
See Mr. Sipress’s New Yorker work here on the magazine’s Cartoon Bank site.
Attempted Bloggery updates a post looking into Libby Tomato Juice ads featuring some of the all-time great New Yorker cartoonists. See it all here!
Cartoon Companion has returned with a look at the latest New Yorker cartoons (the February 6 2017 issue). Read it here.
The New Yorker has posted a preview of its upcoming anniversary issue. Eustace Tilley fans, who look forward to seeing the magazine’s mascot every mid-February on the cover will have to wait another year (if not longer, judging by the last six years). The post also includes a slide show of the non-classic Eustace covers.
For those keeping track, Rea Irvin‘s cover has not been on an anniversary issue since 2011.
Need more Tilley? Here’s “Tilley Over Time” — a piece of mine that ran on the New Yorker‘s website in 2008.
And here’s Rea Irvin’s entry on Ink Spill‘s “New Yorker Cartoonists A-Z “:
Rea Irvin (pictured above. Self portrait above from Meet the Artist) *Born, San Francisco, 1881; died in the Virgin Islands,1972. Irvin was the cover artist for the New Yorker’s first issue, February 21, 1925. He was the magazine’s first art editor, holding the position from 1925 until 1939 when James Geraghty assumed the title. Irvin became art director and remained in that position until William Shawn succeeded Harold Ross. Irvin’s last original work for the magazine was the magazine’s cover of July 12, 1958. The February 21, 1925 Eustace Tilley cover had been reproduced every year on the magazine’s anniversary until 1994, when R. Crumb’s Tilley-inspired cover appeared. Tilley has since reappeared, with other artists substituting from time-to-time.
Joining two previous Ink Spill maps, The New Yorker’s New York, and New Jersey’s New Yorkers, is the Outer Boroughs’ New Yorker Cartoonists. Cartoonists included were born in the boroughs. I’m fairly certain this is not a complete picture — corrections and suggestions always welcome (for instance: please advise if Staten Island had at least one native born New Yorker cartoonist).
[Click on the map to enlarge it].
Attempted Bloggery has been focusing on George Booth this past week (including a close look at the drawing shown here), and why not? Mr. Booth turned 90 the other day; what better time to sing his praises and talk about what he brought to the New Yorker when his work first appeared in the magazine in 1969. Mr. Booth’s style was a brand new creature, unlike anything the magazine had published before.
Booth arrived at the tail end of a decade that saw the introduction of a tidal wave of new artists appearing in The New Yorker: J.B. Handelsman in 1961, Charles Barsotti in 1962, Edward Koren in 1962, Robert Weber in 1962, Henry Martin in 1964, Donald Reilly in 1964, Edward Frascino in 1965, Mort Gerberg in 1965, Peter Porges in 1965, Ronald Searle in 1966, Dean Vietor in 1967, Rowland B. Wilson in 1961, Vahan Shirvanian in 1968, Sam Gross in 1969 and George Booth in 1969.
Looking at the dates of entry, one can see how carefully James Geraghty (the magazine’s Art Editor at the time; he was hired by Harold Ross as Art Editor in 1939) had infused the magazine with new blood. These fifteen arrivals were scattered over the course of a decade, fitting easily into (and not displacing) the existing pool of talent. In the best tradition of the magazine’s art department, they all brought something of lasting value to the magazine. Indeed, every one of them had long careers.
Mr. Booth was and is no exception. His use of reappearing characters is somewhat akin to Helen Hokinson’s so-called “lunch ladies” and Syd Hoff’s Bronx families of the the 1930s as well as George Price’s eclectic characters appearing in his drawings all through his long career. Booth, however, revisits specific characters in his work, people we’ve come to know and in situations we’ve grown to love: the man in the claw-foot bath tub, for instance, or the garage mechanics in their oily splotched coveralls, or Mawmaw, a character based on his mother. Henry Martin once said to me that certain cartoonists “draw funny” (trust me, it’s a highly complimentary remark). Booth draws funny. Before you reach the caption, the drawing itself has already begun working on you the way the very thought of Charlie Chaplin works on you. No one draws like Booth. As a beginning cartoonist I found his graphic mastery intimidating. But it was also, of course, highly educational. Look at the way he’s drawn the ceiling and the ceiling fan in the drawing accompanying this piece; the inclusion of the floor boards found behind cafe counters; the characters in wash in the background. Each one of those customers has a story. The two cooks in the foreground (Laurel & Hardy types) are perfect, most especially the smaller fellow. This is a scene out of life filtered through Booth’s comic genes. These elements of style are what Booth does best. Lee Lorenz (who succeeded James Geraghty as Art Editor in 1974) once said that the best cartoonists are the ones who bring their own world into their work. In all of his work for the magazine in all these years Booth has stayed true to his world. He is, by definition, one of the best.
All of Mr. Booth’s cartoon collections can easily be found on AbeBooks.com
A selection of both Booth’s drawings and covers (and even a few products adorned with his drawings) can be found on The New Yorker‘s Cartoon Bank site.
Attempted Bloggery takes a look at a series of ads for Libby’s Tomato Juice, with art by Peter Arno, Otto Soglow, Syd Hoff, William Steig and James Thurber.